Thiago Silva got back in the win column at UFC on Fuel 6 in China, putting away Stanislav Nedkov with a beautiful arm-triangle choke.
For Silva, it erased the memory of his most recent loss to Alexander Gustafsson in Sweden. It was a big win that will elevate him up the ladder in the 205-pound division.
Formerly trained at American Top Team, Silva recently made the move to the Blackzilian camp.
In this fight, he overcame a grinding, boring game plan from Nedkov to come back in the final frame and impose his will. He got the takedown on Nedkov and quickly tapped him out with the aforementioned arm-triangle choke.
From here, Silva needs to take it slow on his ascent up the division. He just snapped a three-fight winless streak and has not won since late 2009.
One possible opponent for Silva is fellow Brazilian Vinny Magalhães. He recently made a successful return to the company when he beat Igor Pokrajac.
Both guys are about the same position in the division and would present good challenges to one another. Magalhães is the superior grappler, while Silva is the obviously better striker.
Another possibility for an opponent would be Krzysztof Soszynski, who is awaiting an opponent for UFC on FX 6. If Silva escapes this bout with minimal injuries, he could fill in on late notice in Australia, which would undoubtedly earn him some love from the UFC brass.
One final opponent that could be considered is Ryan Jimmo. He made as good of a debut as anyone can make when he knocked out Anthony Perosh in seven seconds in Canada.
Either way, Silva is back in the win column. He has ensured that he will stick around the UFC for at least a couple more fights.